Silent Witness returns for 20th anniversary

BBC One’s popular drama Silent Witness returns to celebrate its 20th anniversary this January.

The new series will feature five thrilling new contemporary stories, starting among the familiar landscapes of London and ending up in the dusty scrubland of Mexico.

A BBC Studios production, Silent Witness continues to tackle some of the issues the world faces today, from the Refugee Crisis to Cartel Violence in Mexico, the dangers of the internet to the powerful influence of the media in how crime is portrayed.

Emilia Fox, Richard Lintern, David Caves and Liz Carr return as the dynamic Lyell quartet.


Episodes one and two are written by Timothy Prager. Nikki is brought face-to-face with the dilemma of how to practically help those that are here illegally. She forms a bond with a young Syrian refugee in a story that takes us from the City of London to the refugee camps in Northern France.


The third and fourth editions are written by Ed Whitmore. Two deaths are discovered hours apart, however the media treats them very differently as a result of their backgrounds. Nikki and Jack are pulled onto the case where the death of a young primary school teacher gets mass coverage from the press and the full resources of the police. Meanwhile, Thomas struggles alone to get justice for his victim, who hails from a council estate and the death appears to be drug related.


Written by Graham Mitchell episodes five and six tell the story of the ripples of violent grief after the disappearance of a teenage girl. Her grieving mother harbours explosive secrets, while the bond between two brothers begins to fray under the weight of suspicion.


Episodes seven and eight, written by Richard Davidson, Covenant explores how social media allows us to build online identities that liberate us but may also bring out the darkest part of ourselves – and how online transgression can result in real-world violence. Meanwhile, Clarissa’s husband Max arrives at the Lyell Centre to offer his particular skillset.


The final stories are written by Jim Keeble and Dudi Appleton, Nikki heads out to the hot dusty scrubland of Mexico when her friend is killed. Whilst paying her respects to the family, she’s quickly swept up in the tragic fallout of the drug war that rages there. A tense thriller, Nikki finds herself in incredible danger whilst Jack races out to help before finding himself having to operate out of his comfort zone with no rules.

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